It was a weary Executive Team that gathered in the larger of the two O’Donnell’s training rooms at 9 am on Wednesday to hear what Nick Fox had to say. Joining them were ten managers and team leaders from across the business who had been personally asked by Jenny to attend and openly participate.
Their attendance, and subsequent role as collaboration advocates, was just one of many steps that she would take to unlock the ‘executive club’ and to make one-team collaboration the centrepiece for driving transformational change across the whole of O’Donnell’s.
‘Morning, everyone’, Nick began with his customary openness.
There was barely a flicker from the group and he knew that their minds were elsewhere, focused on the unfolding turmoil in the business.
‘Have you ever heard of the Three Kingdoms?’
It was a hook, intended to capture their attention, and it worked immediately. Jimmy responded, ‘It’s a part of Chinese history’.
‘It is’, replied Nick, ‘and it’s repeating itself in O’Donnell’s and in most twenty-first-century organisations’.
Now he had everyone’s attention, but only for as long as he promised to be part of the solution and not a distraction.
‘Let me briefly explain.’
Nick flicked a slide onto the projection screen showing a typical Chinese scene and recounted the story of the period in Chinese history following the Han Dynasty (a period of stability and unification) when the great country was divided into three smaller kingdoms, each of which ...